Royals Down Under! Their most memorable Aussie Royal Tours

They love our sunburnt country.
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From Prince George’s cute antics, to overzealous fans getting too excited – both Prince Harry and Prince Charles have copped a few smooches in Oz – there’s never a dull moment when the royals are in town.

This month signals another exciting royal visit with Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan set to embark on their first major overseas royal tour as a married couple.

In just a matter of days, Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan will be touching down in Sydney for the 2018 Invictus Games before carrying out an official tour of Australia, Fiji, the Kingdom of Tonga and New Zealand.

To celebrate, we’ve opened the vaults to check out the British Royal Family’s most memorable Aussie moments.

Australia holds a special place in the royal family’s heart with the first ever visit dating all the way back to 1867 when Prince Alfred the Duke of Edinburgh, the son of Queen Victoria, stopped by Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney.

Since his fateful voyage, there have been more than 50 royal visits, with each one featuring many incredible moments.

In 2015 Prince Harry, who spent his 2003 gap year in the outback, and his charm offensive wooed the nation yet again as he embarked on a month-long secondment with the Australian Defence Force.

Years earlier in 1983, a sprightly Prince William took his first steps at Woomargama, Albury during Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s tour.

Throughout her incredible rule, Queen Elizabeth has clocked up countless journeys to our sunburnt country.

From 1954 until as recently as 2011, Her Majesty has met thousands of locals during her trips and continues to take a great interest in the nation.

“Ever since I first came here in 1954 I have watched Australia grow and develop at an extraordinary rate. This country has made dramatic progress economically in social scientific and industrial endeavours and above all in self-confidence,” she explained in her address to the nation at the time.

Click through the gallery to check out the best royal moments Down Under!

Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla hit Broad Beach

Earlier this year, Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla hit Broadbeach on the Gold Coast during their visit to Australia for the Commonwealth Games.

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Prince Charles and Camilla on Broadbeach

Immersing himself in the local culture, Prince Charles downed a tot of rum during a visit to the Bundaberg Rum distillery.

It doesn’t get more true-blue Aussie than this! Prince Charles meets The Irwins on the stunning Lady Elliot Island. The Prince had wanted to visit the Barrier Reef, to see first hand the damage wrought by climate change and human kind. A passionate conservationist, Prince Charles was participating in a forum of business leaders, politicians, scientists and not-for-profit groups exploring new ways to protect the reef.

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When Prince Charles met the Irwins

Over the years Her Majesty, pictured in Sydney in 1954 on the left and in the Harbour-side city once again in 2006 on the right, has made countless trips to Australia. Each time she has brought her trademark charm and elegance.

Never afraid to roll her sleeves up and get in on the action, in 1963 the Queen used a Flying Doctor radio to address the people of Alice Springs during her visit.

Her love of the nation has been inherited by her family, including Prince Harry who spent his 2003 gap year here.

The young royal loved getting to know the locals, including this cute koala.

Yep, the outback really suited him. In fact, Harry worked as jackaroo on a remote cattle station in Queensland. “I have had a great time working out here, meeting people and learning a bit about how to be a jackaroo. And of course the rugby was absolutely fantastic. It’s a great country,” he explained in 2003.

Since then, the 34-year-old has been back several times. Who could forget this precious moment in 2013 when he entertained a young boy as he mingled with locals in Sydney?

In 2015, Harry had us in love all over again during his month-long secondment with the Australian Defence Force.

The Prince and the Opera House, it doesn’t get much better than that.

During his farewell in May, the strapping Brit was approached by a very forward fan.

Victoria McRae had the guts to smooch him before asking him to marry her.

You gotta hand it to her, she’s anything, if not determined.

Yep, this was a woman on a mission.

In 2017, Harry returned for a whistle-stop trip to Sydney to launch the 2018 Invictus Games.

Just like us, the sky was weeping tears of joy but that didn’t deter the prince from meeting fans who had camped out in the rain (Now To Love included!).

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Harry reunites with Daphne

But it’s all in a day’s work for the aristocratic family. Decades before his son made the pilgrimage to Oz, Prince Charles had his own run-in with model Jane Priest at Cottesloe Beach in Perth. As it turns out, it’s not the only Aussie beach babe the heir apparent encountered…

Duchess of Cambridge, Prince George, Prince William, Princess Diana

Over the years, the royal tours have also given the world first glimpses of new family members. In 2014, Prince George and his chubby cheeks became an overnight sensation (L) and in 1983, there were similar scenes of excitement when a young Prince William arrived in Sydney with his parents (R).

According to locals who Princess Diana spoke to, Prince William (L) took his first ever steps at Woomargama, Albury during his first tour. Decades later in Australia, a wriggly Prince George gave it his best shot too, but with not as much success.

Duchess Catherine and Prince William’s first child did, however, totally entertain and delight! The moment he threw a toy bilby at Sydney’s Taronga Zoo in April, 2014 will go down as one of the funniest highlights from their trip.

Prince William’s nickname as a child was “wombat” so it was only fitting his son be gifted with an oversized version of the mammal from Governor-General Peter Cosgrove.

A royal tour is also the perfect opportunity for the Cambridges to show off their softer side – DJ Middy had no qualms hitting the decks during a visit to a youth community centre in Adelaide in 2014, while a bemused William watched on.

No trip to the Commonwealth of Australia is complete without a stop at Uluru in the Northern Territory.

31 years earlier, Prince William’s parents also paid their respects to the historical sandstone rock.

The Land Down Under is of course most famous for its stunning beaches! Here, Catherine and William pose alongside a surfboard at Sydney’s iconic Manly Beach.

When Diana rubbed shoulders with the buff lifeguards at Terrigal Beach in 1988 it made international headlines.

Duchess Catherine was also swarmed by well-wishers, albeit much younger ones, at the beach.

Sportiest princess ever! Kate had everyone transfixed when she managed to run across Sydney’s Manly Beach in a pair of wedges.

What’s an official visit without a touch of glamour? Catherine and Diana both have regal elegance in spades.

Charles and Diana work their way through the adoring Sydney crowds in 1983.

“Ever since I first came here in 1954 I have watched Australia grow and develop at an extraordinary rate. This country has made dramatic progress economically, in social, scientific and industrial endeavours, and above all, in self-confidence,” The Queen said in 2011.

Here’s to many more years of royal visits to Australia!

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